18
Apr
2018
Posted by: In: Adventure

How Intelligent Are Dolphins?

Dolphins are very intelligent creatures. Many tests have been performed on dolphins to find out just how intelligent they can really be. There’s more to these amazing animals than just jumping out of the water and maybe through a hoop. Check out some examples and reasons why dolphins are so intelligent in this article.

 

A dolphin being researched on in Mississippi, at the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies, has been found to have been training humans, and not the other way around. But how is this possible? As away to help train the dolphins, and as a way to help keep the pools clean, dolphins are taught to pick up any debris, litter, or garbage inside the pool and bring it to the trainers, where they would then be awarded a fish for every piece they bring in. curiously, however, one dolphin in particular found a loophole. When the dolphin found a piece of paper in the pool, it would rush down to the bottom and find a rock, place the paper under the rock, rip off a chunk of paper, and give it back to the humans. The interesting concept here is that the dolphin no matter the size of the litter that was returned, the reward was always the same, and the dolphin started to capitalize on this method to gain more fish. The ingenious behavior didn’t stop there. One day, a gull had flown into the pool where this particular dolphin was residing in, and the dolphin caught the gull and waited for trainers to turn it in. Upon delivery of the gull to trainers, the trainers rewarded this dolphin with many fish, which the dolphin enjoyed- all but one. The last fish, the dolphin had hidden down in the rocks and waited for the perfect moment, where the dolphin would retrieve the fish and use it to lure gulls in to catch them for the big reward. This dolphin caught her calf how to use this method, who in turn taught other calves to really capitalize on fish. This method, along with the communication, shows that dolphins are indeed intelligent and craft species, able to use reason to some extent to capitalize and profit in certain scenarios.

 

In some circles, an animal’s ability to be self aware is a sign of intelligence. Although self awareness is not scientifically defined, it is thought to be the beginning to advanced brain processes, such as thinking about thinking, that humans possess. To test for self awareness, a mirror test is used. The mirror test has researchers mark and animal with temporary dye and a mirror is put in front of them to see if they exhibit any signs of self recognition. With dolphins, it is difficult to tell if their behavior with the mirror indicates social behavior or self recognition, but a study in the mid-90’s concluded that dolphins are in fact self aware and have passed the mirror test.

 

Dolphins are truly amazing creatures, impressing researchers with their intellect every day. Take a dolphin cruise Destin has to offer, to see dolphins in the wild and how they use their social behavior to live together and show off to humans!

17
Apr
2018
Posted by: In: Adventure

A Walk Through the History of DeFuniak Springs

DeFuniak Springs is a town with a long and eventful history, and the town still retains some of its historic values today, making it a popular vacation spot of history aficionados. Not much is documentented before the year of 1881, when the Florida State Legislature the Pensacola and Atlantic Railroad, but DeFuniak Springs is known to be the home of Native Americans before this time. After setting out from Pensacola, a survey crew stopped by an open area with a large, round lake. The survey crewed camped on the shores of this lake, and the leader of the group, W.D. Chipley, decided that the spot would make for a lovely town and that the trees should not but cut, but that the train would actually make a stop at this soon to be town. It was at this point that the town had officially been named Lake DeFuniak after the president of the Pensacola and Atlantic Railroad, but the name would soon change to what we know it as today, DeFuniak Springs.

 

Chipley and a few of his associates worked to turn the undeveloped area into a small railroad stop, and then worked to turn the stop into a small but cozy town. To begin growing the railroad stop into the town we know today, Chipley and his associates began selling real estate in hopes to grow the town in both businesses and in population. One of the associates was able to meet with the leaders of Chautauqua, and he returned to DeFuniak Springs to assemble the Florida Chautauqua Association, where it would operate and keep its doors open for more than fifty years, and do its part in helping grown the town. During the time that the Florida Chautauqua Association stayed open, a free college to educate teachers operated in DeFuniak Springs, drawing in teachers and educators to get their degrees and start teaching at schools. McCormick University was also built in DeFuniak Springs, until a hurricane tragically destroyed the building and it was rebuilt elsewhere. Palmer College also had opened in DeFuniak springs for 29 years. With many other schools coming to fruition at this time, including the Florida Teachers Association, DeFuniak Springs was known as the center for education in the south.

 

Florida’s very first Arbor Day celebration happened in DeFuniak Springs, were members of the community planted trees upon the shore of Lake DeFuniak, back in 1885. It is even believed that some of the trees that were planted on that Arbor day many years ago still stand tall today.

 

The town of DeFuniak Springs has had a colorful and rich history, and many of the buildings retain their classic, vintage look today. To experience the history of DeFuniak, stay in a beautiful DeFuniak Hotel to not only learn about history, but to fully experience it, too.

17
Apr
2018
Posted by: In: Adventure

Destin Summer Events

Summer is right around the corner, and it’s already shaping up to be a fun season! Destin is the home to many annual events that both locals and travelers mark their calendars for. From music events, to wine festivals, to food celebrations, there is plenty to experience in Destin and make a tradition to come back for. Here are just a few of the events you can look forward to in Destin during the summer season.

 

The South Walton Beaches Wine and Food Festival

Great wine or great food is always, but nothing beat pairing them together. Hosted towards the end of April, this delicious festival combines an enormous assortment of over eight hundred wines on on its Grand Tasting event on Saturday. There is, however, still wine tasting and pairing delicious culinary masterpieces all throughout the weekend, and live music from national artists will attend to provide entertainment. Also taking place during the event is tasting seminars, Champagne Lane tastings, Spirits Row, chef demos, and so much more.

All of this will be held at the Grand Boulevard in Destin.

 

Digital Graffiti Festival

This festival is a festival like no other. Graffiti artists are known for their style and their artwork,, but because it is defacing property, and typically done in public where people pass by often, it is banned and illegal to do. So for one unique festival, artists are allowed to digitally project and display their artwork onto the pristine white and iconic walls of Alys Beach, creating a wonderful display of art without the need to permanently paint the building. The three day festival has gone on for more than a decade, and is a must attend, as the art is gone when the projectors turn off! This festival is great for those that are keen fans of art, technology, and architecture.

 

Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic

Returning to the Emerald Coast for more than a decade and a half is this amazing festival for the most amazing fishermen, the Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic. The Blue Marlin is a beast of a fish, found more than twenty miles off shore and weighing in the thousands of pounds. The festival takes place nearing the end of June, which is when Blue Marlin season reaches its peak. There are many awards given during this event, but it’s ever anglers to reel in the big one.

 

Annual Paddle At the Porch

Join Destin at The Back Porch and Oyster Bar for an exciting paddleboard race on the beautiful emerald waters! There are four races taking place, a one mile for beginners, a three mile for recreational, a six mile for elites, and a kid’s race for fun!

 

Even if you are just coming to Destin for some beach time, you won’t be disappointed. Find your Destin vacation rental and start planning your next vacation today!

17
Apr
2018
Posted by: In: Adventure

Tinting Your Windows for Shade and UV Protection

If there is something Florida is known for, it’s the stunning weather. We aren’t called the Sunshine State for nothing! If you’ve ever enjoyed the gulf, you know just how amazing that sunshine can feel. On the other hand, if you’ve ever gotten into a car after a day at the beach, you have seen the bad side of all that sun too. The same sun that makes our beaches so beautiful, makes homes, offices, and boats miserable at times while those UV rays dry rot flooring and plastics. American Pro Tint is a Pensacola window tinting company that specializes in residential, commercial, and marnie window tint installation.

The EPA reported that approximately one third of your home’s energy is wasted through windows. That means your AC is working harder than it needs to in the summertime. By installing window tinting, you can increase the efficiency of your AC system and reduce your energy consumption and bill. UV rays that get through traditional windows can cause flooring and fabrics to fade over time; by stopping those rays, you can slow down this fading.

Those beautiful, floor to ceiling windows found in many office buildings these days come with some costs: privacy can be lacking, glare can affect computer screens, and more windows mean more heat. Window tinting can fix all of those issues while still enjoying the view and natural light windows provide. Reducing glare and heat improves the atmosphere of your business for both clients and employees while beautifying your office space. Interior windows can have tinting installed on them to give more privacy for conference rooms and employee offices. Thicker films are also available to help protect your business. These tints help hold windows together after they have been hit, whether it’s bad weather or someone trying to break inside.

American Pro Tint can also help you with boat and yacht window tint. Installing tint on marine windows dramatically reduces the amount of UV rays (up to 99%) and heat in the cabin, which in turn means less work for your AC and generator. Less UV rays shining on your electronics can prolong their lifetime. It also adds a little bit of privacy when you are at the dock. With all the salty water, marine window tinting is a daunting task for most tint installers, but not for the experts at American Pro Tint.

Whether you need tint installed on your home, business, or boat, or aesthetic or security reasons, trust the professionals at American Pro Tint. You can check them out on their website or give them a call to get a free quote at 850-860-0430.

 

17
Apr
2018
Posted by: In: Adventure

What is Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy?

Imagine your doctor telling you that in order to help treat your condition, you could climb into a chamber where the air pressure is higher than the atmospheric norm and by doing so you could potentially increase blood flow, boost tissue repair, and even shorten recovery time. Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) has been medically approved to treat fourteen conditions, ranging from decompression sickness (the bends) and air embolisms to carbon monoxide poisoning and acute burn injuries. HBOT may seem like it comes from a science fiction movie, but The American Hyperbaric Center in Daphne, Alabama uses it to treat sports injuries, cancer, Autism, and many more medical conditions.

HBOT is an increasingly popular form of treatment for sports-related injuries. During treatment, white blood cell activity is increased in the area impacted by the injury, which can help decrease the chances of infection. Swelling is also reduced due to decreased blood flow in the affected areas while tissue repair is boosted through the surplus oxygen that’s inhaled. Fox Sports News reported on Alvaro Bautista, a Spanish Grand Prix motorcycle racer, in 2011 and how after breaking his femur, HBOT was able to cut his 12-week recovery time in half. The recovery time of ligament injuries on several English football teams was cut by 33% when using HBOT.

HBOT treatment of current cancer patients has been seen as a risk until recently. Since cancers thrive in a blood-rich environment, and HBOT treatment increases blood flow, traditional treatment centers would not use Hyperbaric oxygen therapy; that, however, is changing. Recent studies by both Feldmier, et al. and Thom, et al. show that high levels of oxygen, when combined with an anti-angiogenic supplement, is able to produce beneficial stem and progenitor cells while not accelerating the malignant process of the cancer cells. Hypoxia – a condition in which part of the body does not receive an adequate amount of oxygen – is a hallmark of solid, cancerous tumors, and HBOT can increase oxygen levels in areas that are deprived.

As the fastest growing developmental disability in the United States, it is estimated that anywhere between 1 to 1.5 million Americans have some form of Autism. The cause of this spectrum disorder, including Asperger’s Syndrome and Rett’s Disorder, is still unknown but theories from medical professionals range from fevers and infections to hypoxia and abnormal blood flow. With the source of Autism unknown, treatment has been difficult, but researchers are investigating HBOT and seeing promising results. HBOT is currently used around the world to treat Autism because it can increase blood flow and oxygen levels in the brain, in turn stimulating cerebral tissue repair.

The American Hyperbaric Center also treats a wide variety of other conditions, such as cerebral palsy, PTSD, and Lyme Disease. With a firm belief in giving the human body what it needs, the doctors and staff of American Hyperbaric Center are dedicated to the latest research and treatment regimens to provide promising results for you and your family. To learn more, visit their website or call them at 251-210-1496.

17
Apr
2018
Posted by: In: Adventure

Fishing with the 100 Proof Charters Crew

To locals and visitors alike, few things beat fishing in the beautiful emerald waters of the Gulf of Mexico and Destin has some of the luckiest waters of all. You can catch everything from mackerel and snapper to trophy fish, like swordfish and wahoo. Fishing can be a little daunting though. You need all that specialized gear, a boat and someone that knows how to drive it, plus knowledge of weather patterns. That’s were 100 Proof Charters comes in. 100 Proof Charters has been locally owned and operated since 1996 and has become a favorite. From rods to tackle and of course a boat, they provide all the gear you will need so you can focus on having a good time. All you need to bring is yourself, friends and family, and a smile. Don’t let the name fool you, we offer a family friendly environment that you can bring the whole family along to catch some incredible catches and forge some great, long lasting memories.

Inshore fishing is the most popular when it comes to fishing charter trips. On these trips – usually ranging from 4 to 16 hours – fishers will have the best luck with fish like snapper, trigger, and mackerel, but though you might get lucky and see some wahoo. Want a challenge? You can also enjoy catch and release fishing of sharks ranging from an average of 75 to 150 pounds! If you want to bring the whole family along for this unforgettable, that is not a problem! 100 Proof Charters are U.S. Coast Guard approved for up to 22 passengers.

Are you a more experienced fisherman looking for something further offshore? 100 Proof offers some of the best deep sea fishing Destin has to offer. You can book all day fishing marathons, ranging from 24 to 48 hours. These trips take you between 70 to 100 miles offshore and are ideal for trophy fishing. Marlin, amberjack, and tuna, oh my! The 100 Proof Charter Boat sleeps ten passengers, so don’t worry when booking your overnight trips.

The northern red snapper is world famous and a highly sought after game fish. With tips on what kind of bait to use, and where schools like to hang out, the experts at 100 Proof can help you snag this challenging, aggressive fish when it is in season with special Red Snapper charters.

Whether it’s a short inshore trip with the grandkids, a two day fishing marathon or seasonal red snapper fishing, you will make lasting memories aboard a 100 Proof fishing charter. Ready to reel in the next big one? Just have questions about 100 Proof Charters? You can visit them online at destincharterfishing.org or give them a call at 850-259-7343.

16
Apr
2018
Posted by: In: Adventure

Getting to Know Foster Sanders

When you hear the word “Destin,” beautiful white sand beaches and emerald green waters from the Gulf of Mexico. While this may be the main thing that people think about when “Destin” comes to mind, there is plenty more beauty to be had, namely the Choctawhatchee River Basin. A resident of Destin, Florida and a conservationist named Foster Sanders noticed this river basin’s beauty, and how remarkably similar it was to another basin he had a spent time with.

 

Foster Sanders is a man who grew up in Louisiana, loving the outdoors and continually participating in activities to help get him closer to it. While in college, Sanders served as the Director for the Youth Sunday School at Fishing Bridge, an event that takes part in, and is part of the the Yellowstone National Park Church services. Sanders’ exposure to the great outdoors during this time only heightened his love and admiration for it.

 

Upon returning to Louisiana, Foster Sanders decided to run and serve two terms as the president for the prestigious Baton Rouge Sportsmen’s League. During his time serving, in his second term, the organization was the recipient of a nationally recognized award for the conservation efforts made by the Baton Rouge Sportsmen’s League.

 

Sanders’ conservation efforts didn’t end there, though. After his service as the Sportsmen’s League’s president, he went on to help found the Save the Atchafalaya Basin, Inc. Sander’s served as the president and the voice for this new organization, leading the fight in what could arguably be the most outstanding conservation achieve in the entire history of Louisiana. Sanders worked toward debating the issue statewide and became the chief fundraiser to conserve the Atchafalaya river basin. After many long debates throughout the state, a compromise had finally been reached, between the landowners in the Basin, oil and gas industries, and the Louisiana sportsmen and environmentalists.

 

Sanders has resided in Destin for over a decade now, and he sees a lot of the similarities in the Choctawhatchee river basin that he does in the Atchafalaya river basin that he worked hard to preserve. He calls the Choctawhatchee river basin a “true treasure of Florida.” The beauty that the basin encompasses has even inspired him to write a book about it, Almost To Destin. Almost To Destin is set in the “Ebenezer Forest,” a fictional component of the Choctawhatchee river basin. This book, Almost To Destin, is the first book in his Leila Jane Hewitt saga, with the sequel, Almost To Aspen, following the events of the first book. Foster Sanders continues showing his affection for the great outdoors by writing about it passionately in his books, and proving to his audience that there is more beauty to Destin than just the beach.

16
Apr
2018
Posted by: In: Adventure

Getting Familiar with Kayaks

For many thousands of years, humans have traveled out onto the water by means of manmade narrow boats called kayaks. Originally built by the Inuit and neighboring tribes, these watercraft were fashioned from either wood or a whalebone-skeleton frame, and had an animal skin, namely stitched seal skin, stretched over the frame to give it the buoyancy it needs to float on the water. Kayaks, while many are different in design, most have the same execution. The kayak is very narrow from side to side, often only be a mere inch or two on each side from the rider’s sides, and very long in length, stretching anywhere from ten to up to thirty feet long. The hole that the passenger sits in is called a cockpit, and kayaks can have one to three cockpits. The multi-cockpit design is useful for transporting many passengers at once, or for transporting goods. Building a kayak, long before machinery has been around to aid the process, was personalized and crafted by the man using it, with assistance from his wife to aid in sewing skins.

 

Kayaks have been guiding people out onto the water for the past four thousand years, to help sustain ways of life. The kayak is often translated as “hunter’s boat,” and here is why. Fishers have used kayaks to go out into deep waters to catch bigger fish to provide for their family or tribe, hunters have used kayaks to glide across a river’s surface to close in on prey, and nomads have traveled in kayaks to reach new lands or find access to new resources.

 

Kayaks today see a difference in design and use, but still have the same shape. Many kayaks fashioned today are for sport and recreational use. Sport kayaks a typically very narrow and extraordinarily long, giving it the most sleek design possible for gliding through the water with ease. These kayaks are often used for racing tournaments, and occasionally for recreation. There are kayaks designed particularly for recreation, however, and they are a little wider and a little shorter, perfect for gliding through rivers or for placing in any water to get a workout.

 

Kayaks today are manufactured almost nothing like ow they used to be. While some people and tribes still see making their own as a tradition and still make their own to this day, most that are manufactured are made with certain plastics or fiberglass for buoyancy and durability. The process to make these kayaks can be long and complicated, not to mention expensive. But there are cheaper ways to enjoy a day out on the water with a kayak, such as renting one from a company that specializes in Destin kayak rentals. Some rental agencies will have a plethora of different kinds of kayaks to choose from, recreational to utility, like fishing kayaks. Get a kayak rental and get out onto the water today!